ScallopRAG and ScallopMAC met on 15 and 18 June, respectively, to consider the outcomes of the 2021 pre-season biomass survey for the Bass Strait Central Zone Scallop Fishery (BSCZSF) and provide advice to the AFMA Commission on the total allowable catches (TACs), closures and season dates for the BSCZSF 2021 fishing season. The information provided below does not represent the view of the AFMA Commission, who are yet to consider this advice or come to a resolution on the settings for the 2021 fishing year.

ScallopRAG made the following recommendations, which were supported by ScallopMAC and will be presented to the AFMA Commission:

  • The commercial scallop TAC be set at 4,000 t (less research catch allowance).
  • The doughboy scallop TAC be set at 100 t.
  • The following areas be closed:
    • The Hill east (estimated biomass - 7,540 t)
    • King Island 7 (estimated biomass - 209 t)
    • King Island 9 (estimated biomass - 4,725 t)
    • North of Babel A (estimated biomass - 1,288 t)
  • The fishing season to open on 10 July 2021, or soon thereafter, and close 31 December 2021.

The final meeting minutes and recommendations from ScallopRAG 38 and ScallopMAC 35 will be available on the AFMA website by the end of July 2021.

Table 1: Summary of information collected for each of the beds surveyed during the 2021 BSCZSF annual biomass survey. AB = Apollo Bay, KI = King Island and FI = Flinders Island. Source: Fishwell Consulting.

 

Area

Bed

Estimated biomass (t)

% weight > 85 mm

Estimated biomass > 85 mm (t)

Density (ind/m2)

Mean size

Meats/kg (>85 mm)

Apollo

5 Hours

3,627

99.2

3,598

1.745

97

90

 

AB2-ext.

818

99.5

814

0.221

106

96

 

The Hill

16,137

99.5

15,419

3.167

94

128

 

Sub total

20,582

 

19,831

 

 

 

Flinders Island

FI

6,477

89.9

5,821

0.602

94

77

 

FIN-TS

1,078

95.0

1,023

0.751

97

76

 

FIS-NB

5,587

95.5

5,337

1.566

100

71

 

Sub total

13,142

 

12,181

 

 

 

King Island

JH-ext.

633

23.5

149

0.183

81

114

 

KI-10

4,351

95.5

4,154

2.776

92

85

 

KI-7

1,473

14.2

209

2.300

78

No scallop over 85 mm in samples

 

KI-9

6,367

74.2

4,725

2.820

86

93

 

KI-BDE

1,904

90.4

1,721

0.331

90

86

 

KI-BDSE

15,550

84.2

13,099

2.928

89

85

 

Sub total

30,278

 

24,055

 

 

 

Total

 

64,002

 

56,067